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2010 Subaru Outback 2.5i Premium 6 speed manual
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Discussion Starter #1
Curious if anyone has a writeup on how to replace the brake light bulb on the back of our subarus. (2010) the driver side bulb is out... :(
 

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Black 2010 OB 2.5i Premium CVT
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if you are still within the warranty. i think thats a warranty item.
 

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There's instructions in the Owners Manual, beginning around page 11-53 for the Outback. (The light assembly has to be removed, and then the three bulbs, tail, brake, and turn signal, are accessible at the back of the assembly.)
 

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2010 Subaru Outback 2.5i Premium 6 speed manual
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Discussion Starter #4
if you are still within the warranty. i think thats a warranty item.
unfortunately my car is 2 years and 4 months old... which means that i am out of warranty (36XXX miles) :(

There's instructions in the Owners Manual, beginning around page 11-53 for the Outback. (The light assembly has to be removed, and then the three bulbs, tail, brake, and turn signal, are accessible at the back of the assembly.)
i gave up, i put the manual somewhere safe... too safe and couldn't find it. so I made my own tutorial today. enjoy! if someone wants to sticky this feel free to!


 

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2020 Outback Touring XT, in Crystal White Pearl
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My only added suggestion is to buy two bulbs, since the other side may well go out soon. I replaced my driver-side brake light (which in Subaru parts guides is called a "stop light") maybe 3 months ago, and then the passenger side went out a few weeks ago. Aftermarket bulbs tend to be sold in pairs, anyway, but the Subaru part is sold as a single bulb.

The replacement procedure is pretty well described in the manual (and of course the above video is even better).
 

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2010 Subaru Outback 2.5i Premium 6 speed manual
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Discussion Starter #8
My only added suggestion is to buy two bulbs, since the other side may well go out soon. I replaced my driver-side brake light (which in Subaru parts guides is called a "stop light") maybe 3 months ago, and then the passenger side went out a few weeks ago. Aftermarket bulbs tend to be sold in pairs, anyway, but the Subaru part is sold as a single bulb.

The replacement procedure is pretty well described in the manual (and of course the above video is even better).

that was the only choice. the bulbs come in a two pack. I didn't realize subaru actually has the bulb as a part in the dealership :) and thanks for the kind words about the video! :29:
 

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2020 OB Limited XT
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FWIW, my driver side "stop light" burned out at 40 months of service. A new bulb was $5.10 at my local Subaru dealer and next time I will purchase a 2 pack of 7440 bulbs. I shudder to think what a dealer might charge for a bulb change.

Many thanks for the video.

Fred Meloan
 

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2020 OB Limited XT
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I changed my first driver side "stop light" bulb this morning. It took a total of 18 minutes from start to finish. I had my Phillips screwdriver, 10mm socket and the replacement bulb at the ready when I unlocked the trunk. The hardest part was removing the two "fasteners" that hold the black cover plate in place. After that it was all very straight forward. I can not provide any simple solution to removing the two fasteners. They are strictly a "friction" fit and you just have to move slowly and carefully to avoid breaking them. The bulb is a 12 volt 21 watt 7440. I would guess that a dealer would charge a minimum of .5 hours for a bulb replacement so in my part of the world that could easily total $75-$80.

My $0.02. YMMV

Fred Meloan
 

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FDMeloan, those 2 fasteners are actually kind of simple. If you use the screwdriver with no pressure and just turn them 1/4 turn or so they should pop out, grasp the screw head and pull and the whole fastener assembly comes out of the plastic cover.
 

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FDMeloan, those 2 fasteners are actually kind of simple. If you use the screwdriver with no pressure and just turn them 1/4 turn or so they should pop out, grasp the screw head and pull and the whole fastener assembly comes out of the plastic cover.
Thanks for the suggestion but so far I have not had any luck getting the screw head in the center of the fastener to "pop out".

Fred Meloan
 

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2010 Outback 3.6R LTD
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Outback Rear Lamps

Fred: If you gently place a flat screwdriver behind the plastic panel you're trying to remove -- and then gently lift the piece outward -- you should be able free the two small "plastic panel screws" that you're concerned about.

As for the original post, the entire rear lamp assembly must be freed up in order to access the brake, the turn and the parking lamp contained therein.

To free up the assembly, you must first remove the (2) plastic panel retainers that keep the black plastic panel -- the one that surrounds the rubber "bumper pad" that stops the rear hatch -- then remove the plastic piece itself to gain access to the (2) bolts that hold the rear lamp assembly in place.

Employing either a medium size phillips-head screwdriver or a 10mm socket and ratchet handle, remove the bolts and slide the entire rear lamp directly backward … and by "backward," I mean that the front of the lamp assembly is held in position by two round nylon trim panel retainer clips and, by design, the rear lamp assembly must be pulled directly rearward to free it up.

By the way, this process was performed earlier this evening on our 2010 Outback 3.6R LTD. I hope this helps out other Generation 4 owners ...
 

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2011 Outback 2.5i Premium CVT PZEV
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2011 OB 2.5i Ltd Ruby Red Pearl w/ Ivy Interior
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Thanks for the video - replaced the brake light bulbs today with your assistance!!

Diesel Raver,


You da man ! Thanks very much for your tutorial......gave me the courage to go out there and replace both tail lights today. Exactly the process you showed, just the type bulb different (and of course cheaper) .


Incredible how easy and quick it was. Yesterday found YouTubes reminding me how to replace air filter and cabin filter which I did once before, and got each of those done in 5-10 minutes.


**** ! Feeling macho, with money now burning a hole in my pocket !!!!
 

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2011 SSM Outback 2.5i Premium
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Is the process for replacing the tail light in the door section similar?
Page 11-52 of the owner's manual (or in that vicinity as I'm looking at the 2011 manual). Replacement of EVERY bulb is spelled out there. If you don't have the manual, you can sign up as an owner on Subaru's website, provide your VIN and you'll have quick access to the manual.

There's a panel on the inside of the tailgate, it pops out and you can access the bulbs from there.
 

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I have a question about the tail lights...are the outer lights supposed to glow when the lights are on or is it only the tailgate lights in the middle that glow at night?
 

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I have a question about the tail lights...are the outer lights supposed to glow when the lights are on or is it only the tailgate lights in the middle that glow at night?
Should have 4 bulbs lit when the lights are on, if you have a 2010-2014 (2 in the tailgate, 2 in the regular brake housings). My understanding is that the 2015+ don't light anything on the tailgate except the license plate.
 
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